Claude, Texas

Claude, Texas
Claude, Texas
—  City  —
A view of Claude on U.S. Highway 287, with historic pharmacy building on the left
Location of Claude, Texas
Coordinates: 35°6′27″N 101°21′51″W / 35.1075°N 101.36417°W / 35.1075; -101.36417Coordinates: 35°6′27″N 101°21′51″W / 35.1075°N 101.36417°W / 35.1075; -101.36417
Country United States
State Texas
County Armstrong
 - Total 1.7 sq mi (4.4 km2)
 - Land 1.7 sq mi (4.4 km2)
 - Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 3,406 ft (1,038 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 1,313
 - Density 766.5/sq mi (296.0/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 79019
Area code(s) 806
FIPS code 48-15196[1]
GNIS feature ID 1354580[2]
Grain elevator in Claude
Intersection of US Highway 287 and Farm to Market Road (FM) 1151 in Claude

Claude is a city in Armstrong County, Texas, United States. The population was 1,313 at the 2000 census. Located east of Amarillo, Claude is the county seat of Armstrong County[3] in the south Texas Panhandle. Claude is part of the Amarillo Metropolitan Statistical Area but is some thirty miles east of Amarillo.

During the first half of the 16th century, the Spanish conquistador Francisco Coronado and his party passed through Claude and Tule Canyon, a scenic wonder to the south of Claude off Texas State Highway 207.

Claude was originally named Armstrong City after several area ranches named Armstrong. The name, however, was changed to Claude in 1887. Claude Ayers, the engineer of the Fort Worth and Denver Railway, the first train to travel through the area, requested that the town be named in his honor.



When Armstrong County was formed in 1890, Claude and Washburn competed to be the county seat. The tie-breaking vote for Claude was reportedly cast by the legendary cattleman Charles Goodnight, former co-owner of the nearby JA Ranch. The Armstrong County Courthouse in Claude dates to 1912.

W.A. Warner (1864-1934), a physician in Claude, organized Boy Scouts of America Troop 17 in the spring of 1912. Thirty boys met in his drugstore. As scoutmaster, Dr. Warner trained many of the future civic leaders of Claude. During his medical career, Warner delivered some two thousand babies. Mrs. Warner, the former Phebe Kerrick (1866-1935) became an active community leader in Claude. Both were Illinois natives.

W.S. Decker established a weekly newspaper, The Claude Argus, which later merged with the Goodnight News to become The Claude News in 1890.

Film history

Several films, including The Sundowners, Hud starring Paul Newman (1963), Leap of Faith, and Sunshine Christmas (1977), starring Cliff DeYoung and the closing sunset scene in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), were made in and around Claude.

Notable residents

Tom Blasingame (1898-1989), considered to have been the oldest cowboy in the American West, lived in Claude. He worked in ranching, mostly on the JA Ranch, for seventy-three years until his death in 1989.[4]

Laura Vernon Hamner, an historian, was the postmistress in Claude from 1913-1921. In 1935, she penned a novel about Charles Goodnight entitled The No-Gun Man from Texas. In 1943, she published the acclaimed Short Grass and Longhorns.

Charles E. Maple, a journalist, chamber of commerce official, and Texas state parks figure, graduated in 1950 from Claude High School.

Charles Howard Roan, Medal of Honor Recipient, Battle of Peleliu - 1944 - United States Marine Corps


Claude is located at 35°06′27″N 101°21′51″W / 35.107524°N 101.364094°W / 35.107524; -101.364094[5], about 28 mi (45 km) east of Amarillo.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.7 sq mi (4.4 km2), all of it land.


The Claude Independent School District serves Claude.

The first school in Claude was built in 1883. In 1907, a three-story building replaced the original building at a cost of $14,000. Unfortunately, years later a fire burned most of this building down. The portion of the building that was restored currently houses the Claude Junior High School.

During the 1930s, Claude had the only official-sized gymnasium in the area. The West Texas State College (now West Texas A&M University) basketball team used it on numerous occasions.


  1. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  4. ^ Texas State Senate, Resolution by Teel Bivins of Amarillo honoring the memory of Tom Blasingame, March 1, 1990
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 

External links

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